Ideal Conditions Make for Perfect Racing
Rifle Butts Short Course
Sunday 23rd January 2011
Visiting Ballarat cyclist Rod Hetherington
just edged out Stuart King in a closely fought sprint,
taking out the first race on the 2011 Grampians Vets
Cycling Club calendar.
The mild, calm conditions were
ideal for racing, but the recent wet conditions saw
cyclists eager to get on the road, away from the swarms
of resultant mosquitoes.
Limit riders Meg Parnaby,
Peter Mayo and Merv Thompson set off over the 47 kilometre
Horsham course with a 9 minute advantage, but were
within the sights of the 4 minute riders Tom Eldridge,
Tony Rathgeber, Stuart King and Peter Parnaby along
the Rifle Butts Road. The two bunches combined soon
after the turn back towards Horsham on the Henty Highway,
with about 17 kilometres to go.
With most riders still
working well, the charge was on to keep the chasing
riders at bay.
At this point the scratch riders Rod
Hetherington, Frank Kean, Drew Heard and Sean Prins
were still about a kilometre behind, but made up significant
ground on the leg into Horsham.
The turn onto Golf
Course Road, with about 5 kilometres to go, meant the
final leg was into a slight head wind, the added stress
on tired legs too much for many in the leading bunch.
The scratch riders soon closed the gap, and the whole
field came together with about 3 kilometres to go.
the sprint for the line, Drew Heard acted as initial
lead out man, with Sean Prins, Stuart King and Rod
Hetherington all close on his wheel. Hetherington proved
too strong for King, taking the victory in the final
few metres, with Prins close behind in third.
Hetherington also recorded the fastest
race time of 1 hour and 13 minutes, averaging about